How to make a timeline in a word document

Updated April 17, 2017

A timeline lists the chronological order of a series of events, such as project milestones or the history of a person who is being honoured with an award. Microsoft Word includes SmartArt graphics that enable the creation of a timeline. If you regularly need to create a timeline, or simply need a graphic for a school or business presentation, learn to manipulate the tools in Word to create a timeline and graphically display time-based information.

Open Microsoft Word on your computer. Select "File," and then "Open" to open a new document.

Select the "Insert" tab. Click "SmartArt," which resides in the Illustrations group.

Select "Process" from the Choose a SmartArt Graphic Gallery, and then click a timeline layout, for example, a Basic Timeline.

Enter your text on the graphic by clicking [Text]. Paste or type the appropriate milestone.

Add additional milestones to the timeline by highlighting a shape on the timeline. Then click the arrow to "Add Shape" in the Create Graphic group, which resides under SmartArt Tools on the Design Tab. Choose to add the milestone either before or after the selection you've highlighted.

Delete a milestone by selecting it and pressing the "Delete" key.

Select "File," and then "Save" to save your timeline information.

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About the Author

Tricia Goss' credits include Fitness Plus, Good News Tucson and Layover Magazine. She is certified in Microsoft application and served as the newsletter editor for She has also contributed to The Dollar Stretcher, Life Tips and Childcare Magazine.